Riding with the Blue Moth

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Overview

After the death of his son Will in the 2001 airplane crash that took the lives of nine additional members of the Oklahoma State basketball team and support staff, survival became a common word in Bill Hancock's vocabulary. For Hancock, the former director of the NCAA men's basketball tournament, survival meant discovering a path back to a near normal life. That path took him on his dream journey, from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic - by bicycle, and the 2,747-mile journey from the Pacific Coast to the Atlantic...
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Overview

After the death of his son Will in the 2001 airplane crash that took the lives of nine additional members of the Oklahoma State basketball team and support staff, survival became a common word in Bill Hancock's vocabulary. For Hancock, the former director of the NCAA men's basketball tournament, survival meant discovering a path back to a near normal life. That path took him on his dream journey, from the Pacific Ocean to the Atlantic - by bicycle, and the 2,747-mile journey from the Pacific Coast to the Atlantic Coast became more than just a distraction. It became a pilgrimage, even if Hancock did not realize it upon dipping his rear tire in the Pacific Ocean near Huntington Beach, California, in the wee hours of a July morning.

On his two-wheel trip, Hancock battled searing heat and humidity, curious dogs, unforgiving motorists, and the occasional speed bump - usually a dead armadillo. His thoughts returned to common themes: memories of his son Will, the prospect of life without Will for him and his wife, and the "blue moth" of grief and depression. That pesky moth fluttered around Hancock as if he were a beaming lamp pole in an empty parking lot. Some people suggested he cope with medication; others advised him to get back to his job as coordinator of the NCAA men's basketball tournament as soon as possible. He found himself a glutton for his own punishment, however, unable to shake that blue moth from shadowing him on each step of his everyday routine.

So Hancock chose to battle the beast one-on-one, taking the moth on the ride of its life across America in the hopes of shaking free of its constraints. Maybe he could lose it around a corner in one of the small towns through which he would traverse, like Hope, Arizona; Chickasha, Oklahoma; Onward, Mississippi; or Pleasant Hill, Georgia. Finally, on a muggy August morning, he dipped his front wheel into the Atlantic Ocean along the Georgia coastline of Tybee Island. The bothersome blue moth was still loitering nearby, but by completion of the trek the pest had taken on a new role for Hancock. It would not be drowned in either ocean, or in the buckets of perspiration he shed along the highways of this country. At last the weary cyclist was ready to accept that the moth would be with him for the longer haul.

After the death of his son, Will, in the 2001 airplane crash that took the lives of nine additional members of the Oklahoma State basketball team and support staff, Hancock's 2,747-mile journey from the Pacific to the Atlantic became more than just a distraction. It became a pilgrimage. Photos.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781596701045
  • Publisher: Sports Publishing LLC
  • Publication date: 10/28/2005
  • Pages: 252
  • Product dimensions: 6.32 (w) x 9.58 (h) x 0.96 (d)

Meet the Author

Hancock is the founder of Network-1 Software & Technology.

Jim Nantz is the signature face and voice of CBS Sports, who has covered nearly every one of the networkas sporting events since 1985.
Eli Spielman, Emmy Awardawinning senior studio writer at CBS Sports, has been collaborating with Jim Nantz for more than twenty years.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 4 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 31, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Inspiring

    I was thoroughly absorbed in Hancock's journey through the U.S. He pours out his soul in the pages of his book and I know he has and will touch many who read it. The loss of many young lives in the OSU plane crash was a horrible tragedy and it is inspiring to see that Hancock uses his pain to try to help others navigate through grief.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 27, 2006

    If you have ever suffered the loss of a loved one, you need to read this book . . .

    This is a courageous, compelling story of survival of Bill Hancock and his family after the tragic loss of their son/brother (Will) in the 2001 airplane crash that also took the lives of nine other members of the Oklahoma State basketball family. At that time, Bill Hancock was the director of the NCAA men's basketball tournament. This story has a message for everyone, especially those who have lost those they have loved. I especially enjoyed Bill's missives to his grandaughter, who lost her father at such a young age. I'll never forget this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2006

    Powerful, Insightful, a Must read...

    WoW! I¿ve just completed, Riding with the Blue Moth for the second time. Let me just say, I've cried, I've laughed, I now count Fritos, but I cannot bring myself to do the Vienna Sausages! God bless you all. I believe, Riding with the Blue Moth, is the ¿something¿ that will help guide others on their journey. You have brought honor to Will and to the life you have yet to live. I, too, believe Will knows about this book and was along for the bike ride. What beautiful life lessons you¿ve given to Andie and all of us! Were's the CD for the daily songs that get stuck in your head? :-) Broadcast Journalist Nance Guilmartin states, ¿Grief isn¿t something that you ¿get over.¿ It is a feeling you learn to let carry you wherever it is you need to go to feel the love, once more, of the person you miss so much. God Bless! tish

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 27, 2010

    Recovering From Tragedy

    Bill Hancock's book about recovering from the trauma of his son's untimely and tragic death in a plane crash is amazing. It is one of the best pieces of personal writing I've ever read. You don't have to know Bill, or his late son, Will, personally to relate to this story. You'll weep along the way, but celebrate with Bill as he completes his special journey.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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